Dealing with Identity Theft
By Jake Stroup, About.com Guide
- A Solid Foundation
- Fixing The Problem
- Identity Theft Laws
- Changing Face of Privacy
- Social Media and Privacy
A Solid Foundation
It's been said that you don't really have any rights if you don't know what they are. Government organizations around the world have been scrambling to get a handle on identity theft. Laws are enacted, changed, amended and abolished. This has led to a lot of misinformation (and disinformation) in the public mind. What we know that's really "not-so" leaves us even more open to identity theft.
Fixing The Problem
Working through the financial nightmare is slow-going, but you'll find banks and credit companies are best prepared to help you clear up the mess. But working with medical providers, the Social Security Administration, or a law enforcement agency can be nerve-wracking at best. Here's some pointers for dealing with various organizations, and what you can expect along the way.
- How Do I Fix Identity Theft?
- "My Wallet/Purse Was Stolen."
- "They Cleaned Out My Bank Account"
- Dealing with Credit Card Companies
- Dealing with Banks and Credit Unions
- Dealing with Medical Organizations
- Other Victim Resources
- Federal Trade Commission
Identity Theft Laws
Since identity theft can impact several areas of your life, the laws you come across will vary based on who you're working with. These resources will help familiarize you with them generally. At this writing, there are over 300 bills related to identity theft before Congress. These may or may not get passed, but the laws here are already enacted.
Readers are reminded that your guide is not a lawyer, and these articles are not meant to be a replacement for legal counsel.
- Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA)
- "Red Flags" Rule
- Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
- Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
Changing Face of Privacy
The biggest part of fighting identity theft is controlling your personal privacy. Lawmakers are always debating how best to do this, and many laws come and go. But the bulk of the battle for privacy happens in our courts, with interpretations of the law dispensed by judges.
Social Media and Privacy
Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google - all these online sites have stepped up to the plate and shown the world that we not only connect with each other online, but share a wealth of information in cyberspace. This has naturally gotten the attention of all sorts of people...